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Saturday, February 23, 2019 06:05:29 PM
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Multi-crore taka bail business

Lower court premises places for organised corruption: Supreme Court still most powerful beacon of hope: Arrests, remand part of extortion game

By Special Correspondent
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A prominent national daily has published on Thursday a lengthy report describing in details about the association of police in the money-making business over arrests. The daily release news under headline of arrest business. The police officials jointly or separately arrested 226 persons obviously under the pretext of cases against them and collected knowingly taka one crore thirty five lakhs before releasing them. This is only a tip of an iceberg.When corruption is everywhere it is not believable that the police officials will be punished by the government for corruption.  There has to be some other reason. The people's hopes are that the Supreme Court will investigate into the corruption at every level of the judicial process. Luckily for us the Supreme Court still survives intact although the constitutional changes brought about have made the national election held on 5th January a farce and the government democratically unacceptable.At a time of big crisis in the lower judiciary involving corruption starting with arrest, the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court has reminded of its guidelines to be followed for anticipatory bail by the High Court Division which may create confusion over granting anticipatory bail. Such indication is likely to be misinterpreted for more corruption business in the lower   Corruption has become business. We have bail business for making the corrupt ones earn lakhs of taka. It is multi-crore taka business. The crisis in lower judiciary over bail matter is much more serious than the use of discretion by the justices of the High Court Division. It is an open secret whether one is really connected or not in the corruption cases, these corruption cases are the largest source of corruption for anybody and everybody connected with the process in some way or other.The victims of big bail business network around the lower court premises say that it will be of big service for the reputation of the judiciary if the Supreme Court constitutes a body to investigate into the huge money transactions going on over arrests, police remand and regular bail in lower courts. One has only to go to the district court premises in Dhaka to find stories of corruption in bail matters. It is now openly discussed. Many are connected with such deal management. In fact police arrest, remand to police custody and their bail are all part of the same extortion game. Big corruption cases are big attraction for big money deals over bail and police remand. So, more people are shown involved including the innocent ones,  more is the benefit for corruption business.When such corruption cases will be over that is not anybody's concern. Whether the real guilty ones will be punished or not is also not important.There is also the real fear of police remand. Easy money business is going on here also. In   corruption scandal cases graft taking at various levels is so open that nobody can hardly escape from its clasp. The Anti-Corruption Commission officials are no exception. For them this is corruption within corruption.The independence of the judiciary must not mean that there will be no accountability for corruption committed using the judicial process. The lower court premises are the places where the opportunity for large corruption over bail is most organized.The accused are not afraid to face the trial but suffering begins as soon as the police lay hands on them. They cannot go to anybody for a remedy except to the Supreme Court for advance bail as a temporary reprieve. The Supreme Court's silence has made it look weak. Many will not be able to see the reason why anyone under duress of the circumstances should feel restricted to come to the High Court Division of the Supreme Court to surrender for bail when that practice is not unusual and when the Supreme Court is the supreme guarantor of the fundamental rights of an individual.There was a time when only in exceptional cases very few persons came to the Supreme Court for anticipatory bail. But in recent times hundreds of people, men and women from all over the country, scramble to the High Court Division and line up praying anticipatory bail. This is not a happy sight, it is also not convenient for all.The Supreme Court still has all the powers, no matter what has happened to our democratic nature of the government.The people's fundamental rights have neither been suspended nor the power and discretion of the Supreme Court curtailed. So the Supreme Court has not been undermined unless we help to undermine it ourselves.The helpless people have to look to the Supreme Court as the most powerful beacon of hope, as long it has the constitutional independence, for protecting the rights and dignity of the people.

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